Lonnie Marshall

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Lonnie "Meganut" Marshall is a bass player, singer and songwriter from Los Angeles. He is best known as the frontman and founder of Weapon of Choice, and is the inventor of the Nutmeg Potty Plunger.[1]

Early life[edit]

Marshall is the second of five children born to an African-American father and a Jewish mother. He grew up and attended school in South Central Los Angeles, graduating from Mid City Alternative Magnet School. While in school, Marshall was exposed to P-Funk through a classmate whose father worked for Parliament / Funkadelic. That connection allowed Marshall and his brother Arik to experience the original P-Funk up close and proved to be a highly influential event in his life, inspiring him to pursue a career in music and to create his own brand of funk music which he calls Nutmeg.[2]

He briefly attended Los Angeles City College after high school, majoring in Music, and worked for a short time as a walking messenger for downtown Los Angeles law firms.

He got his start in music by joining the bands Accent founded by Lebo M., Animal Dance, and Shrine with Xan Cassavetes and Steve Hufsteter.

Marshall Law[edit]

In 1988, Marshall and his brother Arik Marshall, a guitarist, formed a band called Marshall Law. They performed around Los Angeles and signed a development deal with Island records. They recorded a demo for the record company, but the band dissolved after having only released two tracks on a Ska Parade compilation. They later reunited in 2006 to release an album titled Another X-cuse.[3] Immediately following the breakup of Marshall Law, Lonnie formed the band Weapon of Choice while Arik joined the Red Hot Chili Peppers and later became a permanent member of Macy Gray's band.

Weapon of Choice[edit]

Lonnie founded Weapon of Choice in 1992 with himself on bass and lead vocals and members Keefus Ciancia (keyboards), Finn Hammer (guitar), Tom-Bone Ralls (trombone), Scott Garrett (drums), Audra Cunningham (vocals) and Angelica "Jellybean" Arnado (vocals/dance). After a video directed by Geoff Moore for their song, Uppity, Yuppity Doolittle, came to the attention of Stone Gossard, the band was signed to Gossard's record label Loosegroove. They released three albums with Loosegroove before the company folded in 2000: Nut-meg says Bozo the Town (1994), Highperspice (1996), and Nutmeg Phantasy (1998). In 2002, the band released "Illoominutty" on Fishbone's Nuttsactor 5 record label, and in 2004, they released "Color Me Funky."

An independently produced Weapon of Choice DVD, Weapon of Choice: Uncut Nut 1992-2006, was released in 2007. The band continues to perform, mainly in the Los Angeles area. Many of the original members have gone on to other bands or pursuits and have been replaced by newer members.

Other work[edit]

Outside of Weapon of Choice, Marshall has recorded and performed with a variety of artists and has participated in a number of side projects.

He has performed alongside members of P-Funk and Fishbone, among others, as part of Trulio Disgracias, a group formed by Norwood Fisher of Fishbone in 1987. The band's lineup changes from show to show. He is also an emcee and bassist for Dakah, a 65 piece hip hop orchestra which performs periodically in the Los Angeles area.

He recorded and toured with Joe Strummer of The Clash, promoting Strummer's 1989 solo release Earthquake Weather. He cowrote one song on the album with Strummer and Zander Schloss, "Boogie With Your Children'".

He has contributed to recordings by Tone Loc, Ice Cube, George Clinton, Funkadelic, Dionne Farris (Arrested Development), Perry Farrell (Jane's Addiction), Fishbone, Les Claypool (Primus), Stone Gossard (Pearl Jam) and Arik Marshall.

He performed with the Red Hot Chili Peppers and George Clinton at the 1993 Grammy Awards Show. He has also performed with Chaka Khan, Queen Latifah, Kurupt (Tha Dogg Pound), Daniel Lanois, N'dea Davenport, Shock G (Digital Underground), Mike Shrieve (Santana) and Doug Winbush (Sugar Hill Records).

He partnered with Gabby Lang a.k.a. Gabby La La as a duo called Love Balm to record an album c. 2002.

He released a solo album, That Would Be Dope, in 2005 under the name Meganut and Friends. The Friends included Skerik, Pete Droge, Stone Gossard and Matt Chamberlain.[4]

In 2009, the Life Drum Core, a group of young musicians he put together, performed at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles for Earth Day and garnered local news coverage. The group performed on drums they had created from recycled plastic buckets on which they painted Earth Day designs.

He partnered with Fishbone member Angelo Moore, and young musicians Malik Deering and Tevin Douglas to form a group called the Unstoppabros which performed in Los Angeles in 2009.

He has taught guitar and bass and led Funk Workshops and camps for kids at the Silverlake Conservatory of Music (founded by Flea from the Red Hot Chili Peppers) since its inception in 2001.

Television and Film[edit]

Marshall had a Public-access television show in Los Angeles on cable TV called the Late Nutt Snack. In 2010, he filmed a pilot for a children's television program called the Lil Big Ups.

He appeared on an episode of the 2000-2001 Bette Midler sitcom on CBS performing a rap with her that he wrote.

He, and members of Weapon of Choice, appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno as the backup band for Snoop Dogg.

A Weapon of Choice song, "Nutty Nutmeg Phantasy", was adapted and rerecorded by Macy Gray and appeared in the 2002 movie Spider-Man and on the soundtrack.

Marshall played MC Madd, the dance battle emcee in the opening scene of the 2007 film Stomp the Yard.

Awards/Recognition[edit]

In 1996, he was voted one of the top five funk bassists in Bass Player Magazine.

Discography[edit]

  • Marshall Law

another X-cuse (2006)

Nut-Meg Sez "Bozo the Town" (1994)
Highperspice (1996)
Nutmeg Phantasy (1998)best-of
Illoominutty (2001)
Color Me Funky (2003) best-of
Really Relevant (2013)

  • Meganut and Friends

That Would Be Dope (2005)

Earthquake Weather (1989)

References[edit]

  1. ^ FROM HIGH TIMES - 8/27/95 It's a Stone Groove Thang
  2. ^ Perfect Sound Forever Weapon of Choice: Nutmeg Rising
  3. ^ Perfect Sound Forever Nutt Gone Yet: An Interview With Lonnie "Meganut" Marshall from Weapon of Choice
  4. ^ AllBusiness Pearl Jam, Weapon Of Choice mates get funky